U.S. Catholic

This magazine publishes news, opinions and reviews about issues concerning the everyday lives of Catholics.

Articles from Vol. 68, No. 12, December

A Closer Walk with Thee: You Have to Be Quiet If You Want to Wake the Baby Jesus in Your Life. in a Noisy, Busy World, the Silence and Solitude of Contemplation Are Essential Elements in Our Advent Search for the Newborn Kingdom
NEW ENGLAND IS AN ONG0ing show of seasonal delights, as everyone who lives there knows. Autumn is the premier seaon, drawing tourists for weekend-long drives through its painterly forests and hills. Winter is a Currier & Ives portrait of snow...
Feedback
Q: I stay at my local parish because... Our pastor is dynamic and spiritually minded, and we have an involved laity. Allan Jirikovec Wausau, Wis I look at it as my family. These are my neighbors. Name withheld Leesburg, Flu The others...
Merry Christmas
We approach these holidays painfully aware that rumors of war turned into realities of war this year, and peace prospects turned into purloined promises. Too many grinches stealing Christmas. Let's reverse the trends. Merry Christmas to the 31 newly...
O Little Wall of Bethlehem: Security Barriers and Wars on Terror Are No Way to Seek Peace on Earth
IN A JERUSALEM NEIGHBORHOOD THAT ABUTS THE WEST Bank, a wall has been erected as part of an awkward undertaking to turn the Jewish state of Israel into the planet's largest gated community. On this particular expanse of the great barrier, a landscape...
Paul Conklin (1929-2003)
On September 17, the nationally renowned photographer Paul Conklin, a veteran contributor to U.S. CATHOLIC magazine, died of cancer at his home in Port Townsend, Washington. His work for U.S. CATHOLIC stretched over almost 40 years, beginning with...
Photographic Memory
A few months ago, the photographer Paul Conklin called to check in about an assignment, Conklin, who has contributed more photo stories to U.S. CATHOLIC than any other photographer, was getting ready to wrap up the photos and writing for his story...
Schools That Work: A Creative Approach to Funding That Puts Students in Both the Corporate Office and the Classroom Has Sparked a Renewal in Catholic Education
Urban Catholic high school have had a tough go over the last few decades. Nationwide, their number has dropped from almost 1,100 in 1970 to just over 600 today, according to the National Catholic Education Association. The financial strains that...
Take a Bow: Can the Body Language of the New Liturgical Rules Help Create Community?
THE PARISH OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IS LEARNING HOW TO bow. It's our first official glimmer of the New Rules, the revised General Instruction for the Roman Missal. We don't all agree that it will convey any more reverence for the Eucharist than we already...
The Gospel According to Mel: Although Not Yet Released, Mel Gibson's Movie the Passion Is Already Embroiled in a Heated Public Controversy. Is It Anti-Semitic and Theologically Flawed or Simply the Greatest Movie Ever Made?
THIS YEAR THE MOVIE GRABBING THE MOST HEADLINES didn't have a major star in front of the camera, hadn't been picked up by a studio, and wasn't even expected to arrive in town until next Easter. Still, by September everyone from Hollywood to Vatican...
The Nine Days before Christmas: After Five Centuries, the Filipino Tradition of Simbang Gabi Is Still Something to Crow About
EVERY YEAR, AS SOON AS ADVENT ARRIVED, MY PARENTS would tell stories about how Christmas was celebrated "back home" in the Philippines, where they had been born and raised. Although we embraced the customs and traditions of the United States, we...
What Are You Waiting for? Try This for Advent: Next Time You Are Forced to Cool Your Heels, See the Wait as a Spiritual Invitation
Advent is the liturgical season of vigilance or, to put it more mundanely, of waiting. During the four weeks prior to Christmas, we light the candles of our Advent wreaths and put ourselves in the spiritual space of the Israelite people who, through...
What Is Contemplation?
Contemplation is both a way to pray and a way of life. It is a relationship with God and a practice to foster that relationship. In contemplation, one is aware of the presence of God. Often a person in prayer remains in complete silence, reflecting...
What Would Buddha Do? an Interview with Thich Nhat Hanh
The first thing you notice about Thich Nhat Hanh is that he walks really, really slowly. He speaks very deliberately. And when he wants a sip of tea, he stops speaking breathes in and out, takes a drink, lowers his cup, breathes again, and continues....
You Better Not Shop Around: Countering the Current Trend to Shop around for a Parish That "Fits" You, Peter Feuerherd Makes the Case for Sticking with Your Neighborhood Community. He Argues That Everyone Loses When Catholics See Churches as One More Consumer Choice
BACK IN MY COLLEGE DAYS, I HELD A WEEKEND job parking cars at a golf club on the South Shore of Long Island. One Saturday the club rented its catering hall for an Hasidic Jewish wedding. I can still picture the river of blackclad men, followed by women,...